Tonight, at a prestigious prizegiving ceremony at Derby’s Edge-Lit 6 event, the David Gemmell Awards for Fantasy were presented to acknowledge the very best epic fantasy titles published through 2016, as voted for by the reading public. With a past roll of honour of popular and acclaimed award winners, tonight added even more great names to that elite list.
The Legend Award for Best Fantasy Novel was claimed by Gav Thorpe’s Warbeast, published by Black Library. Part seven of the multi-author Realmgate Wars series, the title was initially published in an attractive hardback in 2016 and is the latest in a number of well-reviewed titles for this prolific New York Times bestselling author. Warbeast saw off stern competition from John Gwynne’s Wrath, Jay Kristoff’s Nevernight, Mark Lawrence’s The Wheel of Osheim and Brandon Sanderson’s The Bands of Mourning.
The Morningstar Award for Best Fantasy Debut was won by Megan E O’Keefe with Steal the Sky, published by Angry Robot Books. The first title in The Scorched Continent first saw publication in early 2016, and has already been followed by the second and third parts of the series, Break The Chains and Inherit the Flame. Megan’s book won ahead of an exciting array of debut fantasy writing talent in Mark De Jager, Christopher Husberg, Adrian Selby and Jon Skovron.
The Ravenheart Award for Best Fantasy Cover Art was won by Alessandro Baldasseroni for his work on Josh Reynolds’ Black Rift, published by Black Library. Part of the Warhammer: Age of Sigmar series, Baldasseroni’s work saw off artwork from previous 2-time winner Jason Chan (for Mark Lawrence’s The Wheel of Osheim) and past award winner Sam Green (for Brandon Sanderson’s Bands of Mourning) as well as artworks from Paul Young (for John Gwynne’s Wrath) and Kerby Rosanes (for Jay Kristoff’s Nevernight).
Awards chair Stan Nicholls said: ‘This year’s Gemmell Awards shortlists once again represented the great range of fantasy fiction published in the past year, and the results continue to be exciting and unpredictable. I’d like to offer a hearty congratulations to all this year’s winners for their superb books and artwork, as well as the publishers involved in making these great titles happen.’
The Gemmell Awards will return in 2018, and will be celebrating their tenth anniversary next year. For more information, visit http://www.gemmellawards.com/